Jamie Thorburn was “five or six miles per hour down” on his rivals after suffering a bent valve in the second BRSCC Avon Tyres National FF1600 race at Anglesey.
Making his first National FF1600 appearance of 2019 with the new family-run Border Reivers outfit, Thorburn rose from ninth to sixth in race one and had passed B-M Racing’s David McArthur for fifth at the start of race two.
A gearbox issue then caused his engine to rev too high and bent a valve, leaving him unable to compete with his rivals in a straight line.
While he was unable to stop Kevin Mills Racing duo Brendon Leigh and Michael Macpherson, or Team Dolan’s Jamie Sharp from getting by, he resisted late pressure from Oldfield Motorsport driver Aaron Jeansonne to hold ninth, which became eighth when Sharp suffered a race-ending technical issue of his own.
“The car was handling well but ultimately was just too slow on the straights to hold them back forever,” said Thorburn.
“When one got past it put me off-line and a couple more came past. They just drove past me on the straights like I was standing still.”
Thorburn’s team attempted to repair his engine by fitting a new head to the existing unit, completing the switchover just in time for pre-race assembly for the third race.
However, with the engine not sounding as it should, his Border Reivers team elected not to send him out, a precaution against further damage.
“We had an old head of an engine in the back of the lorry, took it out and put it on,” added Thorburn.
“It was misfiring and sounding rough so we thought it was safest to not do the last race and save the rest of the engine, rather than try to drag it round to a result that would have been no better than where we started.
“No matter which team I was with, it would never have been sorted, so it’s something we couldn’t really help.”